“Let’s go wedding dress shopping!” A normal statement for a maid of honour to make to a bride-to-be. But this wasn’t a normal situation. Kristi* and Annie* were Americans, working as full-time Catholic missionaries in one part of Asia, and the conversation was happening in another. And the bride wanted a free wedding dress.
“They were exceedingly astonished and they said He has done all things well. He makes the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.” We have found evidence of the truth in these words in Mark 7:37 as we witness His signs and wonders among the people we serve here in the Philippines. We have grown accustomed to expecting miracles as “Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.” Heb 13:8.
One of the many examples of God’s power and love for His children became evident when we found 3-year-old Christian at a government run hospital last January. He had been lying in a bed in the children’s ward for 5 days because his family could not afford the cost of tests for a diagnosis or treatment; he was near death.
I’ve been putting off writing this blog for far too long now. I was sure I would not have the words to truly express my feelings on what I’m about to write about, and I’m still sure that I don’t. But, bear with me as I attempt to share my heart with you. When we arrived in Malaybalay, I met some kids who have forever changed my life and who I am. There is a rotating cast of young boys (anywhere from 11-15), who find themselves living on the streets of the city.
I recently started seeing a lot of posts from the Love What Matters movement on my Facebook feed. It’s touching.. stories, photos, and videos that highlight what’s really important in life, especially when there are so many negative things in the news and in our own lives that try to steal our focus and our joy.
From before I was born, prayer has been a part of my life. After my sister was born, the doctor told my mom that she shouldn’t have any more kids because her two pregnancies were not good. But my mom and dad wanted a lot of kids, so they didn’t listen to the doctor.
As Jesus went on his way two blind men followed him shouting, “Take pity on us, son of David.” And when Jesus reached the house the blind men came up to him and he said to them, “Do you believe I can do this?” They said, “Lord, we do.” Then he touched their eyes saying, “According to your faith, let it be done to you.” And their sight returned. Matthew 9:27-30
So we’ve decided to seek out a Google Grant – a program through which Google gives non-profits $10,000 per month in free internet advertising!
But, as we’ve seen just looking at this stuff on our own, obtaining and maintaining a successful Google Grant account is complex and can be extremely time consuming. The average nonprofit will only use about 3% of their monthly allowance from Google. So how do we use all of that free advertising? How does advertising on Google work? What is going on with all of this? Well, we found this company, ElevateClicks, and they provide something called PPC management. PPC stands for “pay per click,” an internet marketing system in which people seeking to advertise, like FMC, pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. Here, the fee will be paid by Google, but we need help getting more clicks.
The house is finished!
On Mother’s Day we drove to Nanay Ludi’s house for our weekly visit, our gift of a litson manok (a rotisserie chicken, her favorite) in hand. We arrived to find a very happy couple inside a very cozy, newly completed home!
I believe one can learn the most about the Kingdom of Heaven from children, and this fact has only been made more and more clear to me in my missionary life. It is because I see Jesus so much in children, that I have officially decided to run a kids ministry. Every Thursday night, I do my best to instill the Word of God in 60 to 70 kids, ages 0-14.
Two years ago our Mexico team started a project building a little chapel in General Cepeda for the people that live too far to walk to Mass. Someone had donated a plot of land to the Church, and Father wanted to see a chapel built there, but there were no funds. So, when some friends came to visit and heard about the chapel, they asked their men’s group to fund the project. In a weekend they were able to raise all the money that was needed, with the request that the chapel would be dedicated to the Divine Mercy. We later found out that the woman who had donated the land had a great devotion to the Divine Mercy!
1. We live in an abandoned bakery.
It is a very interesting set up. We have one big room where we all sleep which was used to store bread. It’s awesome, we live in a room that is made to be fresh and cool!! The sinks in the bathrooms opened with your foot so you would not contaminate anything, which we had to fix before moving in. Right next to our room is a big open space which holds an industrial size oven!
It’s 10:48 pm and I just finished rinsing the last of the lice shampoo out of my hair. It’s just a preventative measure this time, but I’m being a little extra careful because a few weeks ago at this time of night I was picking dozens of little eggs off my scalp. Lovely, I know.
Over the mountains and through the jungle…Grandma’s house is on its way to being finished! (Read Part 1 of this story here.)
Together, you all have donated over $800 towards giving Ludi and Lope a home where they can be safe and comfortable in their elderly years. That kind of generosity goes a long way here in the Philippines!
Today was a beautiful day of being a missionary here in Malabalay, Philippines. We started the morning making 2 cups of “hand-brewed” coffee and oatmeal for the family. Up until recently we had 1 pot and 1 pan. Recently we were given a second pot! We feel a bit spoiled, but it sure is nice to be able to make coffee and oatmeal at the same time!